Disclaimer: Neither RWBY nor Hollow Knight belong to me. They belong to Roosterteeth and Team Cherry respectively.


Chapter 2: The Knight Part Two

Deepest silence in holy shell

Given nail and named a Knight…

So busy was Weiss staring at the strange weapon the moth had given them that she didn't notice the presence in the infirmary until she heard something bump against a bed.

Heart in her throat, Weiss looked up and saw the creature she had summoned.

She hadn't had time enough for a good look before. Now though, it cut an even more intimidating stature in the middle of the night. It's entire body blended in with the darkness, and it was only the odd beam of moonlight that struck the creature's mask that allowed Weiss to see it.

The creature stomped towards her and Weiss pulled the blanket up, as if it would offer her some protection.

"S-Stay back!" she commanded, brandishing the Dream Nail.

Much to her surprise, the creature did stop. It stood at attention for a moment, black eyes never leaving her face.

Until it suddenly buckled. Weiss most certainly did not let out an 'eep'. The creature, inhuman though it was, was clearly exhausted. It propped itself on a single arm, shaking silently.

White mask like a Grimm, but none of the hatred. It didn't kill me. It seems to be listening to me. It's not a summon, not at all. But...I summoned it.

Weiss was broken out of thoughts as the creature, who had almost stood up straight again, fell back down with a loud clatter. It was practically heaving, in no shape to stand. And yet it began to try again.

"Stop it, you dunce!"

The words had left her mouth before she could stop herself, and Weiss had climbed out of the bed and stepped towards it. It was only the painful tug of the IV that had stopped her and she hissed. The creature, who had been staring at her silently, dragged itself towards her and reached an arm towards the IV.

It's mask held no expression, but the intent was clear. Weiss batted the hand away and gave it a disapproving look. The creature shrank back, almost apologetically. And tried to stand up again!

"I said stop it!" Weiss hissed, grabbing the thing's hand. She wasn't sure what she'd been expecting. The hard glossy substance really shouldn't have surprised her. The creature tried to pull its hand away, but Weiss wasn't having it.

"You're in no state to be moving around, whatever you are," Weiss told it. The creature stared at it blankly, and Weiss could feel the faintest tremors under her hand. Weiss waited for a response, When she didn't get one, she scowled.

"Well?"

Still no answer, and her irritation melted away as something occurred to her.

"Can you understand me?"

The creature nodded.

"Then why don't you answer me?"

No response except for a bowed head, and Weiss thought for a moment.

"Can...Can you not speak?"

A nod. At least that cleared things up. Though it'd make getting answers difficult. She'd have to limit herself to yes or no questions. As she collected her thoughts, she stared at the silent creature. Now up close, she could see the hairline fracture that ran across the right side of the mask, right across an eye. Almost like a scar.

"Do you know that moth woman?" Weiss asked. The creature looked at her, tilting its head.

"Er," Weiss fumbled a bit, realizing she couldn't offer any more info then that. Then-

"She gave me this," Weiss said, summoning the Dream Nail once more. The creature immediately focused on the glowing blade, staring at it intensely. Then, before Weiss could react, it removed its hand from her grasp to poke it.

The creature immediately was cloaked by the pink light of the Dream Nail, small glyphs flying from the light with a chime. And in that chime Weiss heard a whisper.

'...Light...'

The whisper was faint, and had this day not gone the way it had Weiss would've ignored it. Now? As the pink light faded from the creature, Weiss blinked and cleared her throat.

"Was that you?"

The creature stared at her and Weiss sighed. Well, there was a way to test that theory.

"Stay still," she said, summoning the Dream Nail once more, "And tell me what your name is."

She prodded the creature with the nail, and surrounded by light once more she heard the faint whisper.

'...No name...'

"No name?" the words came out of Weiss's mouth before she could stop them, "What on Remnant do you mean, no name?" Everything had a name! Even things from hundreds of years ago!

But not things during that tumultuous period before and during the Great War, Weiss realized. With slight trepidation Weiss asked, "Tell me, do you know of the Great War, eighty years ago?"

'...War…?'

That was both a relief and a worry. A relief that this creature wasn't some sort of monstrosity from that time period that she had somehow summoned. But, now she realized that her question was a bit silly. Who hadn't heard of the Great War?

The creature in front of her apparently.

Weiss realized with a start that she was beginning to chew her lip again. The second time in a single day. Even in her first few days at Beacon she hadn't done that. She was getting sloppy.

"Tell me," Weiss hesitated before pressing on, "Do you know of any of the Kingdoms?"

Weiss wasn't sure what answer she was wanting or expecting. Whatever it was, it certainly wasn't-

'...Hollownest...'

Hollownest. A name, finally, but not of any Kingdom she'd ever heard of. Filed away the name and continued her questioning.

"Does Vale mean anything to you? Mantle? Mistral? Vacou? Menagerie?"

The creature shook its head and Weiss took a deep breath.

So, the facts so far. She had summoned a creature that was not Grimm, knew nothing of the Great War or the Kingdoms, and offered only a strange name. Coupled with that, Weiss had escaped from some sort of dream world or something, where a moth had given her a weapon that defied all logic.

'Wait a moment, the moth!'

Weiss could get answers from her! Now that she had an idea of what questions she should've asked before! But she'd been so concerned with waking up...How did she find the moth again? Fall asleep? Or-?

Weiss slowly stood up, shooting the creature a look when it tried to follow suit.

"I'm going to try something," she announced. The creature gave no reaction as Weiss lifted the Dream Nail up high. She thought of the moth and that strange world, and with a cry brought the weapon down.

For a moment nothing happened and Weiss felt her face flush. Before she could berate herself though, the strange glyphs appeared once more, filling Weiss's vision until she was blind.

When they cleared, she was back in the den. But not alone.

"You? How did you-?"

The creature stopped looking at its surroundings and turned back towards her. In the soft light of the den, while no less otherworldly, the creature was less intimidating.

"Ahhhh, you return, Wielder."

It was the moth woman, looking not at all surprised by either Weiss or the creature. Weiss immediately sat down, knees underneath her, and began to speak.

"I have a lot of questions-" Weiss hesitated at what to call the moth.

"Hah! I am the Seer, dear Wielder."

"Did you-?"

"Read your mind? No. You wear no mask, Wielder."

Weiss took a breath, schooling her expression, and nodded.

"Seer. My name is Weiss Schnee," the Seer gave no change of expression at the name. On autopilot, Weiss gestured to the creature, "And this is-" before realizing her blunder.

In the moment of silence that passed the Seer hummed.

"I know of your friend, Wielder. Though not many else remember him, many have heard of the Hollow Knight of Hollownest."

The Hollow Knight? And that name again.

The Hollow Knight, at the sound of its name, visibly rose. It didn't go very far, its horns scraping against the ceiling, but it stared at the Seer with an intensity that made Weiss uncomfortable.

"Ahhh, you are much bigger than the previous Wielder, oh Hollow Knight."

"Previous Wielder?" Weiss blinked, sidetracked.

"Meelemoo, you are not the first Wielder of the Dream Nail, Miss Schnee. You are the first of your kind to wield it, however."

"The first of my kind? Do you mean human?"

"Ahhh, very clever, Wielder. Humans? Is that the name of your kind? Despite how different you are, your dreams are much like the dreams of bugs."

"...Does the name Hollownest mean anything to you?" Weiss asked carefully. She'd come back to get answers, and she was going to get them.

"Ah, the Kingdom of Hollownest! You currently stand within its borders. Within the borders of its dream."

"Does...Does the name Remnant mean anything to you?"

"Ahhhh, I am afraid it does not."

Well, Weiss though faintly, that explained something. Before she could muster up her next question, the Seer spoke.

"Wielder, the veil between Dream and your realm has been cut, and many lost dreams have invaded your realm. If not gathered, disaster awaits."

"Wait, what?

"Come back to me, Wielder, once you've gathered enough essence for the Dream Nail to glow. Then you will find the answers to the questions you seek."

"Wait-"

"Do not despair, Wielder. With the Hollow Knight by your side, you will gather those lost dreams in no time. For now, rest."

The den was fading away and before Weiss knew it, she was blinking her eyes as the morning sun shone through the windows of the infirmary.

Silently cursing, Weiss sat up. And saw the Hollow Knight curled up at the end of her bed, staring resolutely out at the infirmary doors. Expressionless as it was, the Knight was clearly on guard.

Weiss was filled with mix feelings at the sight. Had the Hollow Knight been an actual summon, she'd have been elated. But to have a strange being from who knew where, with an autonomous will protecting her? It was...strange. Not bad, but certainly not good. Certainly not, Weiss realized with a sigh, when someone came in to check on her and saw the Hollow Knight staring back at them.

"How am I going to explain you?" Weiss muttered. The Knight gave her a glance before looking back towards the door.

While trying to come up with some sort of explanation, Weiss never though back to why she was in bed when she had entered the Dream from the floor. And even if the Hollow Knight could speak, it would never offer the info.

The Knight had a duty. Answers would either come or they wouldn't. For now, it must protect the Lady Weiss.


Given nail and named a Knight...


Professor Ozpin had been expecting this. Or at least he wasn't surprised by it. After Team RWBY's debriefing and Peter's report, the paranoia that dwelt in his soul told him not to count on this incident being just that.

And much like many times in the past, his hunch turned out to be true.

Though he wasn't surprised, he still blinked upon entering the infirmary and seeing the strange creature standing guard over his student.

The moment he saw the creature Ozpin had to stop a gasp. The creature looking so much like one of the Creatures of Grimm that for an instant he had reached for his weapon. It was only the lack of hatred emanating from the creature that stopped him. That, and the nurses working around the creature. Yes, many of them were giving the creature fearful looks, and all of them looked grateful when he and Professor Goodwitch entered the infirmary. But the creature payed them no mind.

A Grimm would've mindlessly slaughtered everyone. This creature, whatever it was, wasn't.

"Steady, Professor," Ozpin whispered as Glynda tensed next to him. Then, taking a sip of his prized coffee, he stepped closer towards his student.

The creature immediately turned to stare at him, and Ozpin was struck by the unfathomable darkness of its eyes. An absence of anything.

"Would you stop that!"

Ozpin turned his gaze towards his student the same time the creature did. Weiss Schnee looked better than she had yesterday – having been exhausted of aura. Now she looked positively mollified.

"That is the Headmaster of Beacon Academy, and you will show him proper respect!" Weiss hissed at the creature.

Some days, Ozpin wondered if he deserved 'proper respect'. Now though, he was slightly touched – and bemused. Trust that Miss Schnee would, even after sever aura exhaustion, give and demand proper politeness.

The creature stared at the angry girl for a moment before staring at Glynda.

"She is the Deputy Headmistress!"

The creature turned its gaze back towards the door and even as Ozpin chuckled, he was busy taking notes on the strange being.

Grimm certainly didn't have manners. Or listened to commands. Not from Miss Schnee, at least…

"Miss Schnee. I am heartened to see you have recovered," Ozpin said.

Weiss sat straight and stared at him nonconfrontationally. All very polite, and for the most part unnecessary. At least for him. Ozpin knew that Glynda had a soft spot for the Heiress due to the fact that in more cases than not, Weiss was the voice of reason for Team RWBY. And when it wasn't Miss Schnee, it was Miss Xiao Long.

"Thank you, sir. I apologize for any disruption I might have caused."

"The question, Miss Schnee, is exactly what happened yesterday."

"Sir?"

Ozpin took a seat, noting that every time he moved the creature glanced in his direction.

"I'm afraid we don't have a clear picture of what happened yesterday. Your teammates and Professor Port gave their version of events, but I was hoping you could elucidate us."

Weiss hesitated, before giving her version of events. Having been practicing the Art of Summoning, the secret of the Schnee family, she had been about to call it a day after none of her attempts bore fruit when she had suddenly summoned the 'Hollow Knight'.

The buglike creature then proceeded to protect her from what it had assumed were threats, and had reappeared by her side in the middle of the night.

So much explained, but so many more questions.

"First, Miss Schnee, I must ask that if you attempt training with your glyphs in the future not to over do it. Aura exhaustion is not a laughing matter," Ozpin said seriously.

Weiss flushed but nodded, and Ozpin took another sip of coffee.

"Secondly, I admit I might be less familiar with your family glyphs than you are, but this creature is not exactly normal."

"It isn't, sir," Weiss hesitated and Ozpin motioned for her to continue.

"We can only summon foes that we had defeated previously. I have never fought the Hollow Knight before, sir. And our summons do not have autonomy, sir."

"They do not?" Ozpin asked. He had not had many opportunities to observe the act of Summoning. When he'd seen it in action, he'd often see the summons act very much like they would've have in 'life', and reacting to things that the summoner couldn't have known about.

"No, sir. They are semi-autonomous, but without orders they do not-" Weiss sighed, "Summons are just constructs of Aura. They do not have any personality, they do not act without orders."

"And this creature has a personality?"

The creature turned towards him. And, slowly and deliberately, sized him up. Ozpin hid his surprise behind a sip of coffee, even as Weiss began to berate her summon. What he had assumed was emotionless was perhaps not as emotionless as he had hypothesized.

"You do not think this is a simple Grimm," Ozpin interrupted.

"...No, sir," Weiss admitted.

"Professor," Glynda warned.

"There's a simple way to test this, Professor Goodwitch. May I?"

Weiss nodded and hesitated, before turning towards the creature. The creature stood still, staring at Ozpin. It didn't react even as he reached out towards it. No reaction even as he placed a hand on its sleek mask. No reaction as he sent a gentle pulse of aura towards it.

But the creature's aura did react, pushing against him with a pulse of stark white light.

Ozpin heard Glynda take a sharp breath behind him and was aware that all the eye on the room were on him and the creature.

"Everyone knows that the Creatures of Grimm are soulless, without Aura," Ozpin said to the room as he withdrew his hand. The creature continued staring at him.

"Tell me, Miss Schnee. Did you make up the name?" Ozpin asked carefully.

Miss Schnee shook her head.

"No, sir. I do not know what I summoned. I do not know how, sir. But, I know that it is called the Hollow Knight."

"And how do you know this?" Glynda asked.

Weiss was silent for a moment, her expression giving away some internal conflict. Finally the girl sighed and answered.

"It came to me in my dreams."

Ozpin could see why Miss Schnee wouldn't want to have offered such an explanation. It was too strange, too mystical, to make sense or believe.

Ozpin knew magic better than most. And Miss Schnee's explanation only furthered his worry.

"It seems clear to me what to do," he announced. Glynda and Weiss turned towards him, awaiting his response.

"Once you have recovered, Miss Schnee, you will return to your classes. You will be given an extra day on any assignments you currently have. As for the Hollow Knight, I'm positive that Professor Oobleck will be positively gleeful at the prospect of research," Ozpin said dryly. Glynda rolled her eyes and Weiss looked politely confused.

"Perhaps you should call your family, Miss Schnee? They might know something as well."

"Of course, sir!"

"For now, take some rest. No doubt your team will be here to visit you later, and I will leave it to you to explain it to them," Ozpin said kindly.

"Yes sir. Thank you," Weiss said with a bow of her head. Ozpin's response died in his throat when the Hollow Knight bowed its own head. He stared at the creature for a long time, even as it stared back.

"...Come, Glynda. We have paperwork to attend to," and that was no lie, Ozpin thought with a rueful bitterness.

"Sir, what do you intend to do?" Glynda asked as they made their way back to the tower.

"I intent to wait, for now. The Hollow Knight is clearly not a threat," hopefully.

Aware that Glynda was not pleased, he turned towards her and gave her a smile.

"I will of course keep a firm eye on it."

"As will I," Glynda said, and Ozpin knew that at the first sign of violence the Hollow Knight would have the ceiling dropped on it.

"For now, we can only wait and see," Ozpin sighed, "I do not envy Miss Schnee to have to explain her summon."

"Sir?"

"If the Hollow Knight could've been de-summoned, don't you think Miss Schnee would've done so?"

Ozpin heard Glynda's slow exhale and felt her glare on him, and he took a sip of coffee.

"The future will be interesting," he mused. Now hopefully that old Mistrali curse, "May you live in interesting times," turned out not to be true.

Somehow he wasn't feeling very optimistic.


Given nail and named a Knight...


Weiss spent the rest of the morning agonizing over how she was going to explain everything to her team. And exactly what she was going to explain to them. She still felt bad about leaving the finer details about yesterday out of her explanation to the headmaster. But...she hadn't wanted to look like a fool. She barely knew anything about what happened yesterday. Telling the Headmaster that she'd somehow entered a dream world called Hollownest and met a human sized moth who gave her a strange aura weapon without being able to explain what Hollownest or the Dream Nail, or even who Seer was didn't sit well with Weiss.

'Come back to me, Wielder, once you've gathered enough essence for the Dream Nail to glow. Then you will find the answers to the questions you seek.'

If that was how Seer wanted to play this, then fine. She'd gather this 'essence', get her answers, and then she'd report to the Headmaster.

A solid plan formed, Weiss nodded her head and laid back for a moment. She sat up ramrod straight when she heard the telltale sound of Ruby Rose rushing towards the infirmary. It was a very distinctive sound.

"Weeeiiiissss!"

Ruby Rose burst into the infirmary, in her school uniform and with a worried expression on her face. Normally she'd chide her partner for being so dramatic, but considering what had happened yesterday, Weiss just sighed.

"Hello, Ru- gack!"

"You're okay!"

"Ruby, lungs!"

"Hey there Weiss-cream~!"

Weiss sighed again, prevented from massaging her temples due to Ruby still hugging her. The expression on Yang's face told Weiss that the blonde very much realized this. Much to Weiss's surprise though, Yang's bright grin turned into a more concerned look and she looked over Weiss, as if the nurses hadn't already patched her up.

"You okay, Weiss?"

"I, uh, I'm fine."

"Are you sure, Weiss?"

"Yes, Ruby, I'm sure-"

"Are you really sure?"

"Yes-"

"But are you?"

"Yes-!"

Weiss narrowed her eyes and turned towards Blake, who had down next to her with a small grin. Blake had the nerve to smile even more as Weiss glared at her, before laughing.

"It's good to see you awake, Weiss," Blake said warmly.

"It's good to be awake, Blake. And for the last time, I'm fine Ruby."

Ruby pouted but finally let go of her, sitting down next to her.

"Can't blame us for being worried, what with what happened yesterday," Yang said. Though she said it lightly, Weiss felt her face flush.

"My apologies. I didn't mean to cause you all to worry."

Her teammates glanced at each other, bemused, and Ruby flashed her a big smile.

"It's okay! I know you didn't mean to do...whatever you did."

"What did you do, Weiss?" Yang asked, "You didn't show up for dinner and when we came to look for you there was this huge creepy Grimm."

"Yeah! It was super tall and gangly, and like Yang said it was really creepy! It even used a sword and made the ground explode! I never heard of whatever Grimm it was, and guess what? Professor Port was confused too! Course, he killed it in like one blow, but still-"

"You were practicing Summoning, weren't you?" Blake said, interrupting Ruby. Weiss looked at Blake, surprised.

"How do you know about Summoning?"

"Well," Blake shrugged, "It's a bit of an open secret, that the Schnee family had the only recorded case of a hereditary semblance, and that that semblance allows them to summon copies of Grimm. Your family doesn't really hide it."

Blake looked uncomfortable and Weiss could hazard a guess why Blake knew more about the Schnee's than your average person. She didn't hold it against her. Maybe once upon a time – but once upon a time she'd never ever have associated with Blake. And she was incredibly glad that those times had passed. Blake was an incredible friend, that Weiss would trust with her life.

"My family never saw the need to keep it a secret. It isn't like anyone can replicate our Semblance," Weiss admitted.

"Wait, I thought your Semblance was your Glyphs?" Ruby asked.

"It is. But within the Schnee Semblance is a secret art. Summoning allows us to summon forth foes we defeated once before to do our bidding."

"Wow. That's kinda unfair," Yang said.

"Says the human equivalent of the Third Law of Physics?"

Yang's response was sticking out her tongue. Ruby had put a finger on her chin and looked thoughtful.

"Soooo...That thing from yesterday was one of your summons?"

If only it was that simple…

"Yes and no," Weiss sighed, "I have not yet attained the Art of Summoning. Despite my mastery of glyphs...Summoning still eludes me. I had been spending yesterday trying to learn how to summon."

"Wait, you were training your Semblance all day yesterday?" Yang asked.

"Yes, yes, I know that was foolish of me. I...just couldn't stand the fact that I had not yet attained such a simple part of my Semblance."

"Why didn't you ask us for help?" Ruby asked quietly.

For a moment Weiss was caught flat footed. Why hadn't she asked for help? Because this was something she had to do on her own.

Weiss knew this wouldn't fly with most of her team. Maybe Blake would understand, but-

"I...Didn't think about that. I was training my Semblance, and-"

"Semblance training is pretty individualistic, yeah," Yang said. And Weiss knew that the blonde understood. Of all of Team RWBY, Yang was the best at proper, efficient training techniques. When Weiss had asked her how she knew so much, Yang had surprised her further saying not only was her father the General Trainer for Signal Academy, but Yang had taken several elective classes on the subject. She took her training seriously.

"Still, you should've asked one of us to tag in with you. Any bit of observation could've helped, and we could've used the training too," Yang admonished.

"I know that now," Weiss sighed.

"Soooo..." Ruby said, apparently content that Weiss wasn't going to do anything silly in the future – which she wouldn't! - "Well, you still summoned that thing yesterday, so-"

"I didn't. Or rather, I did, but-" with a groan, Weiss gave the explanation about her Semblance she had given to the Headmaster.

"The Hollow Knight isn't a normal summon," she finished. Yang was looking thoughtful, Ruby looked slightly confused. And Blake was giving Weiss a strange look.

"Hollow Knight?"

"There's no easy way to explain this..." Weiss began slowly. Wanting to get the moment over with, she gave a sharp clap.

"Come on out."

It was almost worth it, seeing the looks of confusion on her team's faces being replaced by surprise as the Hollow Knight dragged itself out from underneath the infirmary bed it had been hiding underneath. She would, in particular, remember the way Yang gave a short scream.

"Say hello to the Hollow Knight," Weiss managed to say with a serene expression as her team stared at the Knight in blank shock.


Given nail and named a Knight...


It had been cramped underneath the sleeping nest, and the Knight had been glad to be able to stretch again. The noble, the Lady Weiss Schnee, had explained how she'd try to ease her team into it. Still the Knight tensed on seeing Red, Black, and Yellow. And after the three had gotten over their shock, the Knight could see how Black was tensing up, readying to attack.

The Knight wanted to tense up to, but the Lady Weiss had impressed upon it to remain peaceful. Red, Black, and Yellow were her 'dear friends' and that the Knight would be working together with them.

The Knight had never worked with past foes. It had never worked with anyone. As was, if the Lady Weiss did not want them harmed, then the Knight would not harm them.

Before Black could attack, Weiss held out a hand.

"Wait! It's fine!"

"Fine?! Weiss-"

"I know what it looks like, but let me explain."

The Knight stood still as the Lady Weiss spoke in hushed words to her friends. It took a long moment, and the distrust didn't vanish from Yellow and Black's eyes. But they did not attack it.

"Now that we're all on the same page, allow me to do the introductions. Team RWBY, this is the Hollow Knight. Hollow Knight, this is Team RWBY. Ruby Rose-"

"Uh, hey?" Red waved, strange silver eyes giving the knight a curious look.

"-Blake Belladonna-"

Black nodded, amber eyes not leaving the Knight.

"-and Yang Xiao Long."

"Sup," Yellow said, in a too relaxed voice.

The Knight kept staring at them. The Lady Weiss had explained that they were students, not of knowledge like the students of the Teacher, but rather in the art of fighting. The Knight could see no sign of nails, or anything else that resembled weapons or armor. But, it would not underestimate them. They had held their own last time. Even if they were only students.

The Knight would simply have to regain it's old strength.

The Knight began to walk away as the Lady Weiss's team pulled her into a conversation. It knew better than to stick around for conversations it wasn't privy to. So it stood a distance away and remained vigil.

If the Lady Weiss said that Team RWBY was not a threat, then they weren't a threat. That didn't mean that other threats could become present. And now the Knight had more than the Lady Weiss to protect. The Lady Weiss would be first priority, always, but the Knight would protect her team as well. In a way, they were now comrades-

"Uhhh."

The Knight looked down as Red – Ruby Rose – sidled up to it. The strange bug – a human, apparently – was giving the Knight a curious look. This was nothing it wasn't used to. On the rare ventures that the public of Hollownest had seen it, many similar looks had been leveled its way.

Still, there was no fear in her eyes. And she was not a threat. So the Knight stared at Ruby Rose for a moment, before turning back to the door. Only to have its attention taken by Ruby Rose poking its side. The poke had been gentle, non-hostile, so the Knight didn't take action. It did turn back to Ruby Rose, who continued to stare at it with those silvery eyes.

What did she want?

"Soooo, you're the Hollow Knight? I guess we were already introduced, but its nice to meet you. Weiss told me that you're going to be staying with us for a while, so welcome to Team RWBY! Or, uh-"

Ruby Rose began to mutter various names that didn't seem linked in any way shape or form, except for containing the letters R, W, B, Y, and H. She didn't seem very happy with any of the words. The Hollow Knight watched this for a moment, not sure what it should do. It had never been prepared for this. As such, it decided to pretend that Ruby Rose wasn't there (1).

Slowly, so as not to cause alarm, the Hollow Knight took out the remains of its nail. No matter how many times it stared at its old weapon, the fact remained that it was broken. Once upon a time, it would've been unbelievable – a nail made from the purest pail ore, able to break. But its time in the Black Egg temple had corroded the nail till it was nothing more than a blunt weapon. And yesterday's attack from that portly warrior was the final straw.

It shouldn't have mattered. The Knight would just have to find another nail, but -

this nail had been a constant for a long time. It...did not sit right with the Knight to throw it away.

So busy thinking, the Knight was startled when Ruby Rose leaned in to get a closer look at the nail.

"Oh, wow, is this your weapon? Can I see?"

The Knight felt uncomfortable with the prospect, but it could see no reason to deny Lady Weiss's teammate. So it carefully handed the small human the remains of the Pure Nail. It didn't know what Ruby Rose would do with the nail. She did not seem the sort to use a long nail like the Knight.

The Knight was about to watch the door once more when it spotted the way Ruby Rose held the remains of the nail. She held it like someone familiar with such weapons. Not only that, the gleam in her eyes reminded the Knight of the Nailsmith. The grip of a warrior but the insight of a smith. The Knight turned towards Ruby Rose as she looked over the remains of the weapon, muttering under her breath.

"-huh, the way this broke, its not like this is cheap metal whatever it is. It must have been really old, and-"

"How old is this weapon?" Ruby Rose turned to look up at the Knight. The Knight stared at her before shrugging. It had no idea how long it had been sealed away in the Black Egg Temple. Locked within eternal battle with the Light of the Plague, the Knight had lost all sense of time.

"Huh. Well, it's a well made weapon. Or, at least it was...We could probably rebuild it."

The Knight perked up at that and leaned in closer. Ruby Rose blinked.

"Would you like that?"

The Knight nodded. It could not properly defend without a weapon. Ruby Rose smiled at it before turning around.

"Hey, Weiss!"

"What?"

"Can I take Hollow Knight to the blacksmith?"

"Why?"

"Cause we need to fix their weapon!" Ruby said, brandishing the broken nail. The Hollow Knight turned to the Lady Weiss, who seemed to be thinking on the idea. Finally with a sigh she waved Ruby Rose off.

"Fine. Just, please don't cause trouble."

"Don't worry, it'll be fine!"

"Hey, I'll go with you sis!" Yang Xiao Long said, cheerfully. An artificial cheer. The Knight could see why she wanted to join them. She did not yet trust the Knight.

She had no need to be so paranoid, but it was not an unseemly sight in a warrior. Ruby Rose seemed to be okay with it, and the Knight followed the two humans as they walked out of the infirmary.

The Knight would have to keep its faith in Blake Belladonna, until it had a nail once more.


Given nail and named a Knight...


"Rubes, what were you thinking!"

"What?"

Ruby looked honestly confused, and Yang glanced backwards to make sure that the Hollow-whatever wasn't listening to them. Not that she'd be able to tell if tall, dark, and creepy was listening, what with that expressionless mask…

"Are you scared-?"

"Dammit, no!" Yang hissed at her too canny little sister. Ruby stared at her for a moment before shrugging.

"Their weapon is broken, Yang."

"So?"

"Well how're they gonna fight without it?"

"I'd rather prefer it couldn't fight at all..." Yang muttered.

Ruby stopped in the middle of the hallway and turned towards her sister, a frown on her face.

"Yang Xiao Long, you are not suggesting depriving a warrior of their weapon, are you?" Ruby said sharply.

"Hey, hey, shhh!" Yang put her hands out. Ruby continued giving her that look and Yang sighed.

"Look, maybe I am creeped out. But I'm more worried. What if it starts attacking people?"

"Do you trust Weiss?"

"Wha-? Of course, what kinda question is that?"

"I trust Weiss too. That's why I trust that she wouldn't summon anything dangerous," Ruby said simply.

"Er, Rubes, I'm pretty sure Weiss didn't mean to summon this guy."

"But she did. And she didn't get hurt. Heck, the Knight was protecting her from us! I trust them."

"Sometimes you're too trusting," Yang sighed.

"Is that a bad thing?"

Yang turned towards the Knight, who was standing a respectful distance away, staring at a wall. Tried to see past the monster that had attacked them yesterday.

"I don't think it is," Yang finally said. At least, she wanted to believe that it wasn't a bad thing, to be trusting.

Ruby hummed, but didn't say anything else. Instead, she brandished the broken weapon the Knight had given her.

"Besides, look at this. Old and broken, maybe, but look at how intricate and well made it once was! This is a real classic, like Crocea Mors!"

It had surprised Yang when, after she had managed to convince everyone to show her their weapons, Ruby had spent a good while gushing about Jaune's weapon. A weapon dork her little sister might've been, but she didn't tend towards the classics. But apparently Crocea Mors had been enough of a classic to even impress Ruby. Something about it being like '80 years old and still sharp omigod!'.

Yang took a closer look at the weapon. It was a sword, but not in any style the hand was familiar with. First of all, it didn't have a hilt. Not a clear one anyway. The entire thing looked like it was made from one piece of metal – no obvious cross-guard, no leather straps around the hilt. If she hadn't been at the business end of the thing yesterday, she would've called it an amateurs attempt to make a sword. A piece of junk.

Yang might not have been the weapon's nerd Rubes was, but she knew enough. Such a strange sword might've been unwieldy to use for a human, but for whatever the Hollow Knight was?

"It's weird looking," she said at last.

"It looks more like a lance, yeah," Ruby said offhandedly. And now that she had said it, Yang realized that it was sorta lance like. Like a jousting weapon, as impractical as jousting lances were(2).

"Do you really think that you can reforge it?"

"I can at least try," Ruby said, "The hardest thing is going to be to decide what metal to make it out of. This sword isn't made out of the traditional stuff, that's for sure..."


Given nail and named a Knight...


"So!" Ruby Rose clapped her hands, "I managed to get some carbon steel!"

The Hollow Knight stared down at the metal on the bench. Ruby Rose waited, a smile on her face. And Yang Xiao Long waved at other humans in the smithy, trying to set them at ease most likely.

This wasn't how the Knight imagined a nail smithy to look like, but it was clear that this was a nail smithy. And Ruby Rose knew her way around it, walking around with practiced ease.

"It cost a bit, but this should be enough to reforge your sword! It's good metal too!"

The Knight lifted a chunk of the metal. It was metal. Heavy, sturdy. Metal.

The Knight couldn't say much else about it.

"So now you're ready to forge!"

The Knight stared at Ruby Rose as she cheered. A moment passed and Ruby Rose's smile slipped.

"Uh, Rubes? Are you sure they know how to, uh, forge?" Yang Xiao Long asked. Ruby Rose looked at the yellow human strangely.

"What sort of question is that?"

"Sure, Hunters and Huntresses learn how to make their weapons, but militia-men don't. Soldiers don't either," Yang Xiao Long turned towards the Knight, "Do you know how to make a sword?"

The Knight shook its head. To think that the humans in front of it were versed both in nail and nailsmithing…A strange combination, but not a foolish one.

"Huh," Ruby Rose looked confused, before shaking her head, "Er...Would you like me to make your weapon?" she asked, hesitant.

The Knight nodded, and Ruby Rose rocked back.

"Weeeelllll...Okay. Won't let you down," Ruby Rose said, determined.

Ruby Rose, the smith, went to work, muttering under her breath, and the Hollow Knight took a seat. Yang Xiao Long gave the Knight a look.

"This is gonna take a while, you know that right?"

It was aware, yes.

"Arrreee you just gonna sit here, or-?"

The Knight did not move and Yang Xiao Long shrugged.

"Your wish I guess. Lucky that its a Sunday...Well, I'm gonna head out, kay?"

"Kay!"

The Knight, guessing that this was a question of confirmation, nodded.

And then, Yang Xiao Long having left and Ruby Rose working her art, the Knight waited.


Given nail and named a Knight…


The Knight opened its eyes, feeling the Soul of the Lady Weiss. A moment later the Lady Weiss walked into the smithy, followed by Yang Xiao Long and Blake Belladonna.

"There you are," the Lady Weiss said. The Knight stood up at attention, taking off the strange sign that had been placed around its head.

'Not a Grimm! If you touch me you get to deal with Weiss Schnee!' with a small picture of a smiling mask.

Blake Belladonna's eyes flickered towards the sign curiously. Yang Xiao Long, on the other hand-

"Hey, Rubes! Please tell me you've at least eaten! You better not have worked all day long on this!"

"I ate, I ate! Hang on a moment!"

"You should have seen her work on Crescent Rose. She almost passed out cause she forgot to eat. Dad really let her have it," Yang Xiao Long mock-whispered to her teammates. Blake Belladonna shook her head with a smile and the Lady Weiss muttered, "Why am I not surprised?" with a note of fondness.

"You better not be telling stories about me!"

"Wouldn't dare~!"

Ruby Rose walked out of the inner smithy, googles over her messy hair, wearing a thick apron and gloves, and holding a long object wrapped in a blanket.

The Knight perked up at the sight and Ruby Rose grinned.

"Sorry to keep you waiting. Here!"

Ruby Rose held out the bundle and the Knight reached out to unwrap the blanket. And there was its nail. Different from before, no longer made of that pure pale ore. But the Knight could tell that its edge was keen enough to kill, strong enough to stand up to attack. It could not begrudge Ruby Rose for being unable to smith a Pure Nail, with how rare pale ore was.

The Knight stared at Ruby Rose – the Nailsmith Ruby Rose – who smiled and pushed the nail towards it.

"Go on, take i-"

The Knight knelt down to a single knee. Not for the first time it felt the loss of its other arm, but it grasped the nail with as much ceremony it could muster with its single arm, bowing its head. The moment it grasped the nail, it sent a pulse of Soul into the weapon. And there, within the new blade, it could feel the echoes of pale ore.

"O-Oh!"

"I can see why you call it the Hollow Knight," Blake Belladonna muttered.

The Knight stood up, lifting the nail up high. Then twirling it into its preferred reverse grip, the Knight once more bowed to the Nailsmith Ruby.

"U-Uh, there's no need to-" She was interrupted by Yang Xiao Long putting an arm around her shoulder.

"Relax, Ruby! They're just thanking you. Accept it," Yang Xiao Long said happily, looking at the Hollow Knight with less distrust than before.

"...Heh, I guess. I'm really proud with this. I tried keeping its design the same as much as I could, and whatever metal or alloy that old sword was made of was hard to work with, but-" Ruby motioned towards the nail the Knight held.

"Eh?" she said happily.

"I'm impressed," the Lady Weiss said, admiring the nail, "You did a good job, Ruby."

The Nailsmith Ruby giggled and Yang Xiao Long tousled her hair.

"Come on, we gotta get something to eat. And you gotta work on that assignment Oobleck gave us."

"Oh no, I completely forgot!"

"Don't worry, we'll help you out," the Lady Weiss said, "After all, you were working on the Hollow Knight's weapon the whole day. A Schnee does not forget her debts."

Neither did the Hollow Knight.

"Oh, its not that big of a deal-"

"Do you want my help or not?"

"Oh, no, please-!"

"I'm just teasing you, Ruby. Come on."


Given nail and named a Knight...


Team RWBY were walking back to their dorm when they ran into their first problem. Weiss knew that it'd eventually happen – she was astonished that someone hadn't made a fuss in the smithy. Ruby must've been able to convince people more easily than Weiss thought possible.

The problem was that the Hollow Knight, while not a Grimm, looked so much like those soulless creatures, so inhuman that Weiss knew that someone in Beacon would take offense, sooner or later.

Though of all the people to run into, she thought sourly, did it have to be Cardin Winchester and Russel Thrush? Normal people, she could deal with. Brutish oafs like these?

At least her teammates shared her distaste. Blake's expression twisted into a scowl at the sight of the duo and Yang's grin turned a bit sharp. Ruby, who'd been walking alongside the Hollow Knight, frowned at the sight of them.

The only one who didn't seem disturbed was the Hollow Knight itself, for obvious reasons. The Knight walked behind them steadily, staring at the sights of Beacon Academy, and more often than not, at the windows and what was outside.

"What the hell is that thing?" Cardin Winchester said loudly, as he walked their way. Any surprise in his voice was ruined by the smirk he had. Rumors traveled fast, and when Weiss had been discharged from the infirmary she had heard the hushed whispers about a strange Grimm in the weapons workshop.

"Looks like the sort of thing Port would scrounge up," Russel Thrush replied.

Weiss had to give the mohawked jerk that. Professor Port did like his live Grimm as demonstrations.

Now the Hollow Knight's attention was squarely on the C and R or team CRDL. Weiss took small pleasure at seeing Russel hesitate. Cardin on the other hand, puffed his chest and stared right back at the Knight.

"The hell are you looking at?" he said roughly. The Knight tilted it head before turning to Weiss.

"Ignore him," Weiss said, preparing to step past the two. Cardin stepped in front of her, scowling.

"Who do you think you are, acting all high and mighty like that?" he asked.

"Weiss Schnee, Heiress to the Schnee Dust Company?" Blake deadpanned, and Weiss bit back a giggle. Cardin growled, taking a step towards Blake. Weiss saw Yang begin to move in the corner of her eyes-

And then everything became silent as the Hollow Knight threw its head back and roared. A roar not of sound, but a silence that suffocated all sound, stole the breath away, and paralyzed the body. By the time sound returned, the Knight was looming over Cardin and Russel, a hand on the nail on its back.

"Come on man!" Russel said, dragging a pale Cardin away. The duo turned the corner, though not before Cardin yelped out, "This isn't over!"

The moment the two were gone, Yang began to laugh and Weiss could feel a grin threaten to break. She nodded at the Hollow Knight.

"Thank you."

"Y'know, maybe this won't be that bad," Yang said.

None of them noticed, in the orange twilight light, the reflection of several Vengeflies in the glass of the windows.


Deepest silence in holy shell

Given nail and named a Knight…


(1) This same strategy had once been attempted by Weiss Schnee, and had failed spectacularly

(2) Horse jousting never caught on on Remnant, as horses were skittish around the Creatures of Grimm and without the art of horseback lance fighting becoming popular, jousting remained an obscure activity for the idiots of small villages

And the second chapter, done. More to come too.

I can't say too much about what's going on, since that's what the story for. But, for those of you curious as to why the Knight refers to Weiss as a noble lady, that will eventually become relevant.

It's a challenge, writing for an 'emotionless' character who cannot talk. And any chance of the Knight learning sign language is turned difficult by the loss of their arm.

So now Team RWBY has a new teammate! Ozpin is tired, Glynda is suspicious, no one has any idea of the full magnitude of what has happened -

And that will soon change.

Tune in next time to find out!